Bite Me, Brussels.

Reviewing food for the foreigners, without all the fluff.

Archive for May 27th, 2010

Going, going, GONG

Posted by rachelinbxl on May 27, 2010

The Gong restaurant next to the Ixelles cemetery was a lucky find on I was looking for good, cheap-ish food near a friend in Ixelles and this one had the nicest website. On arrival, I discovered the major roadworks going on in the area. This meant the resto was much emptier than normal. In fact, there were only 3 groups in with us. So service was speedy and attentive. The menu had already looked very interesting online, a mix of Japanese dishes (sushi, sashimi and tempura – with some exotic twists), and more typical Vietnamese dishes. I chose the mixed tempura dish and my friend took the chicken with red curry and coconut. The dishes arrived very quickly. The mixed tempura had 2 mangetout peapods, one baby sweetcorn, one asparagus stick, a piece of pumpkin or sweet potato, an aubergine slice, a scallop, 2 prawns and one unidentified vegetable (yummy). This was served with a weak soy sauce, and horseradish. Each item was perfectly cooked and the tempura batter was crunchy. The only problem is eating fast enough to enjoy all items hot, whilst not feeling sick or not fully appreciating each flavour!
The chicken was grilled, with dried coconut and a piece of lotus root. The curry sauce was served on the side and was not overly spicy (or overly coconutty.. a slight disappointment, but nice to be able to choose the amount). Each was served with a pot of rice (not only plain white).
I forgot my camera, so I hope this is enough of a description.
We enjoyed both dishes and took a long pause before dessert to enjoy our wine. At this point, the owner (a lovely Vietnamese lady) came over to chat with us about how we had found the restaurant (and complain about the roadworks damaging business). Gong has only been open for 6 months bu has built up a name in the neighbourhood… I’d say it was justified. She was determined that we should try a dessert… and even brought the cakes over to show us. My friend chose a sort of pistachio bavarois, while I took omochi, a traditional japanese rice ball filled with red aduki bean paste. We each had these with black sesame ice cream.
At this point my friend remembered she could take a photo with her camera, so we have a picture of the amazing ice cream. it was a very unusual flavour, not overly sweet, but really really good!

Cake with black sesame ice cream

I really liked this restaurant. The decor is very zen -open and airy, tastefully decorated. Let me know what you think!

Restaurant Gong
489 Chaussee de Boondael

Food: A-
Atmosphere: A
Service: A-
Price: B+
Languages: French, English, Probably also Vietnamese!

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